A Novel Therapeutic Strategy for the Treatment of Glioma, Combining Chemical and Molecular Targeting of Hsp90a

Mehta, Adi, Shervington, Leroy Alexander orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-0663-0583, Munje, Chinmay and Shervington, Amal A (2011) A Novel Therapeutic Strategy for the Treatment of Glioma, Combining Chemical and Molecular Targeting of Hsp90a. Cancers, 3 (4). pp. 4228-4244. ISSN 2072-6694

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers3044228


Hsp90α's vital role in tumour survival and progression, together with its highly inducible expression profile in gliomas and its absence in normal tissue and cell lines validates it as a therapeutic target for glioma. Hsp90α was downregulated using the post-transcriptional RNAi strategy (sihsp90α) and a post-translational inhibitor, the benzoquinone antibiotic 17-AAG. Glioblastoma U87-MG and normal human astrocyte SVGp12 were treated with sihsp90α, 17-AAG and concurrent sihsp90α/17-AAG (combined treatment). Both Hsp90α gene silencing and the protein inhibitor approaches resulted in a dramatic reduction in cell viability. Results showed that sihsp90α, 17-AAG and a combination of sihsp90α/17-AAG, reduced cell viability by 27%, 75% and 88% (p < 0.001), respectively, after 72 h. hsp90α mRNA copy numbers were downregulated by 65%, 90% and 99% after 72 h treatment with sihsp90α, 17-AAG and sihsp90α/17-AAG, respectively. The relationship between Hsp90α protein expression and its client Akt kinase activity levels were monitored following treatment with sihsp90α, 17-AAG and sihsp90α/17-AAG. Akt kinase activity was downregulated as a direct consequence of Hsp90α inhibition. Both Hsp90α and Akt kinase levels were significantly downregulated after 72 h. Although, 17-AAG when used as a single agent reduces the Hsp90α protein and the Akt kinase levels, the efficacy demonstrated by combinatorial treatment was found to be far more effective. Combination treatment reduced the Hsp90α protein and Akt kinase levels to 4.3% and 43%, respectively, after 72 h. hsp90α mRNA expression detected in SVGp12 was negligible compared to U87-MG, also, the combination treatment did not compromise the normal cell viability. Taking into account the role of Hsp90α in tumour progression and the involvement of Akt kinase in cell signalling and the anti-apoptotic pathways in tumours, this double targets treatment infers a novel therapeutic strategy.

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